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Pope Names Bishop Alvaro Corrada Del Rio to Puerto Rico Diocese

July 6, 2011

WASHINGTON—Pope Benedict XVI has named Bishop Alvaro Corrada del Rio, SJ of Tyler, Texas, as bishop of Mayaguez, Puerto Rico. Bishop Corrada, 69, succeeds Bishop Ulises Aurelio Casiano Vargas.

The appointment was publicized in Washington, July 6, by Msgr. Jean-François Lantheaume, chargé d’affaires at the Apostolic Nunciature to the United States.

Alvaro Corrada was born May 13, 1942, in Santurce, Puerto Rico and was seventh of 14 siblings. He studied at Jesuit seminaries in Poughkeepsie, New York; Shrub Oak, New York; and New York City. He earned a bachelor of arts degree from Fordham University and was ordained a priest in 1974.

After ordination he completed course work for a doctoral degree in theological science at the Institut Catholic in Paris, and taught at Colegio San Ignacio in Río Piedras, Puerto Rico, and Xavier High School in New York City.

From 1975-1978, he served as a retreat master and director of the marriage renewal movement at Casa Manresa Retreat House in Aibonito, Puerto Rico. From 1979-1982, he was assistant pastor at Nativity Parish, in New York City, and from 1982-1985, pastoral coordinator of the Northeast Catholic Hispanic Center, based in New York. He also worked as a counselor to Hispanic inmates at Ricker’s Island Prison Center in New York and as a lecturer at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Bishop Corrada was appointed auxiliary bishop of Washington in 1985, and apostolic administrator of Caguas, Puerto Rico in 1997. He was named bishop of Tyler in 2000. When he was named an auxiliary bishop for the Washington Archdiocese, he became the first Puerto Rican native to be named a bishop for the U.S. mainland.

The Mayaguez Diocese is located in the southwest portion of Puerto Rico. It has a population of 502,515 people, with 402,010, or 80 percent of them, Catholic.

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